Alexander Averin

Saturday, 14 November 2009

The storm has passed

Dear Diary,

Music by Halle

Do not believe in anything because you have heard it.  Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumoured by many.  Do not believe in anything simply because it is found in your religious books.  Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders.  Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations.  But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.

Hindu prince Gautama Siddharta, the founder of Buddhism 563-483 BC

Well the rain is still falling; it seems as though the Welsh monsoon season has arrived and today it’s that slow, steady, quiet kind of rain, dropping in a soft way onto the already sodden ground.  The river is behaving itself so far but we followed the course of the River Wye in the car yesterday, down to Hay and it was already up to the top of its banks.  

We had battened all the hatches and were on high flood alert yesterday but the gales that were forecast were not as bad here as predicted, I think they were at their peak overnight but we may have missed the worst of the weather for a change. 

I had stocked up with food and had meals planned for a few days - I’m not usually this organised but I am in hibernation mode and comfort eating always accompanies the survival of Winter as far as I am concerned.  That and nice log fires and books of course.

And I’ve more books!  A lot of new books are published at this time of year, ready for Christmas. 

There are two men I hold in high esteem, one is my hero Tony Benn who is 84 now.  Whatever your politics may be he is a man of high intelligence and the words he writes are laced with great wisdom.  I have borrowed his latest book, Letters to my Grandchildren. Thoughts on the Future.   If you are tempted to read this do also read his book Dare to be a Daniel because this is another great read.  All his books come highly recommended, there are many to choose from.

Don’t tell anyone but I’ve fallen for another man just lately, it is Monty Don - I blogged about him just the other day. I reluctantly returned  his Ivington Diaries to the library this week as there is a waiting list for the book. 

Monty is another ‘sweet heart‘, a beautiful and a gentle man in the truest sense and such a gifted writer, I think whatever he wrote about I would read  because he writes from the heart, his words flow with passion and an enthusiasm that just shines and inspires.  That is a word I love… enthusiasm - it comes from the Greek… en theos… from God. 

I am now reading his book My Roots.  A Decade in the Garden which is made up of articles he wrote for The Observer and Monty admits in its introduction that he always wanted to be a writer, not a gardener. To my mind it is obvious that he is a very successful gardener but he is first and foremost a writer.

It is not only men who write sense.  I have just read Janet Street Porter’s latest book. Don’t let the B******* get you down.  I am a great fan of JSP and I do recommend her book although I have to say that with me she is preaching to the converted and I already practise and am prone to preach most of what she espouses.

So are there any other blessings on this wild, wet day?

Welsh lamb stew bubbling away on the hob, dumplings to be added soon. 

The woodburner is lit and a stack of logs is at the ready.

Television.  Sometimes it is just the thing, usually when I am tired and want to flop.

And it’s Sunday tomorrow, my favourite day.

Before I go here is a poem - and it is written by another octogenarian, Maya Angelou.

Touched by an Angel

We, unaccustomed to courage
exiles from delight
live coiled in shells of loneliness
until love leaves its high holy temple
and comes into our sight
to liberate us into life.

Love arrives
and in its train come ecstasies
old memories of pleasure
ancient histories of pain.
Yet if we are bold,
love strikes away the chains of fear
from our souls.

We are weaned from our timidity
In the flush of love's light
we dare be brave
And suddenly we see
that love costs all we are
and will ever be.
Yet it is only love
which sets us free.

Have a great weekend,

Go mbeannai Dia duit,


Frances said...

Oh Cait, what wonderful words and thought you have sent us once again.

I am so glad that the rainy storm has not done too much damage to your home and land.

You've brought me a smile, with your carefully preparing for hibernation. I am sure that if I did not have wonderful shops just a five minute walk away, I would do the same. Or try to do the same.

I know a bit about Monty Don, and will now try to see if that marvelous library of mine has some of his books. I bet that the answer will be yes, and if it is not ... that they library will order at least one of them for me, and the other library members.

Thank you, as always for sharing the poem.

Every post that you write sends invitations to each reader to find out more about the world in which we live. And encourages us to appreciate all our opportunities.

Thank you! xo

Mark said...

I like the feeling after a storm - I can spicture Mid Wales, cereleum sky, the water tonking down the rivers...

I am blogging about books later today - take a look.

Tonny Benn - you are right; interesting man.

Jeanne said...

Such a beautiful journal
Much love

Bee said...

Comfort eating and reading - YES! I really struggle in November, and these are the things that pull me through. I'm having a cup of tea and an oatmeal/cranberry/chocolate chip cookie right now.

Lots of intriguing things here, but I was so glad that you mentioned Monty Don. I read a very compelling interview with him, not so long ago, and meant to look up his books. You've reminded me! Thank you, Cait.

Marcheline said...


Wonderful post! I am going to look up a larger version of that photo and use it in my next steampunk artwork - it is EXACTLY what I was looking for!!!


- M

Cowgirl said...

Cait, whenever I visit your blog there is something special there for me - loved the poem, loved the description of you hunkering down - so glad you didn't get the worst of the floods - I could smell that heavenly lamb..... made me want winter back again (briefly!).... thanks so much. xo